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Blockchain solutions for scientific paper peer review: a systematic mapping of the literature

Allan Farias Fávaro (Universidade Federal de Santa Catarina, Florianopolis, Brazil)
Roderval Marcelino (Universidade Federal de Santa Catarina, Florianopolis, Brazil)
Cristian Cechinel (Universidade Federal de Santa Catarina, Florianopolis, Brazil)

Data Technologies and Applications

ISSN: 2514-9288

Article publication date: 17 August 2023

Issue publication date: 15 April 2024




This paper presents a review of the state of the art on the application of blockchain and smart contracts to the peer-review process of scientific papers. The paper seeks to analyse how the main characteristics of the existing blockchain solutions in this field to detect opportunities for the improvement of future applications.


A systematic review of the literature on the subject was carried out in three databases recognized by the research community (IEEE Xplore, Scopus and Web of Science) and the Frontiers in Blockchain journal. A total of 1,967 articles were initially found, and after the exclusion process, the 26 remaining articles were classified according to the following dimensions: System Type, Open Access, Review Type, Reviewer Incentive, Token Economy, Blockchain Access, Blockchain Identification, Blockchain Used, Paper Storage, Anonymity and Maturity of the solution.


Results show that the solutions are normally concerned on offering incentives to the reviewers' work (often monetary). Other common general preferences among the solutions are the adoption of open reviews, the use of Ethereum, the implementation of publishing ecosystems and the use of InterPlanetary File System to the storage of the papers.


There are currently no studies covering the main aspects of blockchain solutions in the field of scientific peer review. The present study provides an overall review of the topic, summarizing important information on the current research and helping new adopters to develop solutions grounded on the existing literature.



Funding: This work was funded by the Foundation for Research and Innovation of the State of Santa Catarina (FAPESC). Cristian Cechinel was partially supported by the Brazilian National Council for Scientific and Technological Development (CNPq) (DT-2 Productivity in Technological Development and Innovative Extension scholarship, proc.305731/2021-1).


Farias Fávaro, A., Marcelino, R. and Cechinel, C. (2024), "Blockchain solutions for scientific paper peer review: a systematic mapping of the literature", Data Technologies and Applications, Vol. 58 No. 2, pp. 214-242.



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